May 08th 2023

The future of mobility

Herbert Demel, top manager of the automobile industry, as guest speaker at MCI

The well-attended lecture was held on the topic "Future of Mobility - Strategic Decisions in Turbulent Times". The former CEO of Audi not only shared his numerous experiences at the board of various well-known companies in the automobile industry, but also talked about the challenges that this sector will face in the future. However, even the technical approach was not left out. For this purpose, Demel built a connection to topics such as greenhouse gas emissions, hydrogen-powered vehicles and solar energy. In addition, he outlined the technical requirements that would have to be implemented in the next few years in order to still be able to achieve the goals of the 2030 Agenda - or at least to come closer to them. The presentation also provided a fascinating preview of the global trends in the automobile industry.

Herbert Demel offered us a very exciting and broad view of the current challenges in the field of energy and mobility. As a proven cosmopolitan, Demel presented the global connections in the industry in a fascinating way and was able to show with various anecdotes that in the end the human element always plays a central role at all levels and in all situations in life.

Herbert Demel studied mechanical engineering at the Vienna University of Technology and completed his PhD in technical sciences in 1978. After six years of scientific work at the Institute for Combustion Engines and Automotive Engineering, he left the university and joined the private sector. The start of his career was his position as coordinator for anti-lock braking systems at Bosch GmbH in Stuttgart. He then moved to Audi in Ingolstadt in 1990 as head of the Engine and Powertrain development department. Just five years later, he started as chairman of the board there. Numerous top positions followed, which also took Demel abroad, such as chairman of the board of Volkswagen in Brazil or to Italy to lead the restructuring of the struggling car manufacturer Fiat. He then returned to Austria in 2005 to become CEO of Magna Powertrain AG, a subsidiary of Magna Steyr. In spring 2012, he was appointed honorary professor at the Vienna University of Technology. In the period from 2014 to 2017, Demel was first Operative Managing Director and later Chairman of the Management Board at the plant engineering company M+W Group in Stuttgart. Since 2017, in addition to coaching, he has also held various positions on the boards of well-known global companies.

Our department was delighted to have the opportunity to provide our students and employees with exciting insights into the automotive industry, the various aspects of business management and the prospects for technical innovations thanks to this lecture by Mr. Demel.